Congress mulls 'Maharashtra model' for Karnataka

Congress mulls 'Maharashtra model' for Karnataka

If Congress President Sonia Gandhi decides to implement the 'Maharashtra model', more leaders could get representation in the organisation. Credit: PTI

Congress leadership is grappling with the idea of splitting the post of the leader of the legislative party and the leader of the Opposition in the Karnataka assembly, which is learnt to be the reason for the delay in reshuffle of the state unit of the party.

The suggestion to split the post of the CLP leader and that of the Leader of the Opposition was made by AICC observers Madhusudan Mistry and Bhakta Charan Das who had visited Karnataka last month for consultations with the state leadership of the reshuffle of the party's state unit.

A senior AICC leader pointed out that Mallikarjun Kharge, the AICC General Secretary in-charge of Maharashtra, had split the posts the Leader of the Opposition and that of the CLP leader in the previous Maharashtra assembly.

While K C Padvi was the leader of the CLP, Vijay Wadettiwar was the Leader of the Opposition in the Maharashtra Assembly, enjoying the rank of a cabinet minister. The post of Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Council was held by the NCP.

However, these arrangements lasted barely for a couple of months as the state went to polls in October.

If Congress President Sonia Gandhi decides to implement the 'Maharashtra model', more leaders could get representation in the organisation.

Former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, who is the CLP leader as well as the Leader of the Opposition, is against the splitting of the two posts and has conveyed the same to the party leadership during his meetings in the capital last week.

Meanwhile, a section of the leadership had propped up Mallikarjun Kharge as the Karnataka Congress chief. Senior leaders D K Shivakumar and M B Patil are considered frontrunners for the post of the KPCC chief.

Kharge met AICC General Secretary K C Venugopal here on Friday and is learnt to have conveyed that he was not interested in the post of the state unit president.

Siddaramaiah and Karnataka Congress President Dinesh Gundu Rao had quit their posts after the party's dismal performance in the assembly bypolls last month.